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< 7. The Genocide Machine
9. The Spectre of Lanyon Moor >

8. Red Dawn

Rating Votes
10
1%
2
9
1%
2
8
16%
23
7
21%
30
6
28%
39
5
14%
20
4
17%
24
3
0%
0
2
0%
0
1
0%
0
Average Rating
6.2
Votes
140
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Latest Community Reviews

From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
7
Acting Rating:
8
Replay Rating:
8
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: XxDachshundxX Review Date: 9/23/18 12:56 am
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

Red Dawn is an interesting Doctor Who story for me. When I first discovered Big Finish, I used to write lists of plays that I wanted to listen to. On my original list was Red Dawn. I was fascinated by this story because I love Ice Warriors and the mythos behind them. I didn’t listen to this story for a long time, as I listened to Jubilee and then got a bit bored. At the end of 2017, I decided to give the 1-50 audios a listen, and one of the first I listened to was Red Dawn.
This story sort of surprised me. Previous Ice Warrior stories have indicated that the named aliens are evil, warring being, but this story really challenges that. Just like The Curse of Peladon, the Ice Warriors are diplomatic and honour-bound. They believe in peace and mercy. And also, unlike other Ice Warrior stories, the Ice Warriors have character and personality and emotions. They only want what is best for others as well as themselves.
The real villains here are the humans, most notably Webster. He is portrayed by Stephen Fewell, who injects a lot of ability into this story. His motive is simple: he wants to abduct an Ice Warrior that he can bring back to Earth, so he can genetically engineer soldiers with Martian DNA. It may sound too simple, but it works well with the story.
The soundscape in this story is excellent. The Martian atmosphere is realised by hissing and echoing, and it is very effective. I also love the sounds of the ice cracking as the Ice Warriors break free. The music is amazing, extremely reminiscent of an authentic 80’s score. It sounds very unearthly and complements the sound design. You can find the score somewhere on YouTube, I’ll leave a link when I find it.
The story is very simple and basic, but that doesn’t detract from the plot. Some people argue that the story is flat, but I think it’s full of character-based moments. It’s really a study of human nature and how they react to certain situation.
The only downfall I can see is the Part Three cliffhanger. It is obvious that the writer forced it into the plot. It’s literally just Webster pointing a gun at the Doctor and saying “I’ll kill you...” but it’s resolved in Part Four by Webster finishing his sentence “...if I have too.” (Something like that. I can’t remember the exact dialogue). It’s so extremely forced that it takes me out of it.
In conclusion, I think that Red Dawn is an underrated gem. It is a simple story about honour and motives. Despite its flaws, it is personally one of my favourites.

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From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
5
Plot Rating:
5
Acting Rating:
7
Replay Rating:
3
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: NewWorldreviewsReview Date: 8/13/17 7:10 pm
2 out of 4 found this review helpful.

While Red Dawn has a few interesting concepts and ideas, and I see the appeal in the initial pitch, it's a story that, sadly, doesn't quite match the potential that it could have had. For the most part, it's a slow moving tale, where most of the characters just talk at each other, with little in the way of reward.

The plot sounds exciting: NASA land humans on Mars, where they find an Ice Warrior artefact, left behind when they evacuated the planet. Inside is, you guessed it, Ice Warriors! Sure, it's a bit Tomb Of The Cybermen-y, but it could be interesting, especially considering the Ice Warriors are much more morally complex than the Cybermen. However, after a fairly promising part one, the story gets far too bogged down in meaningless conversations about honour and intentions, and they never really amount to anything in the end. And the story is resolved in the least interesting way: with a pointless sacrifice and a big explosion.

The production on this is as great as most of the early Big Finish's: the actors are fantastic, particularly Peter Davison, Nicola Bryant and Georgia Moffatt, and the sound design and music are great. It's just a pity that the material they are given is so pointless and dull. Still, at least it's fairly short.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
6
Plot Rating:
5
Acting Rating:
6
Replay Rating:
5
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: thefatdoctorfanReview Date: 8/8/17 3:51 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

This is an average Big finish story in my opinion. There's nothing that makes it stand out in the range, especially the 1-50 Range as there as many classics in that section. I only got this as it was 99p on the Big Finish website and it's worth about that. The premise was an interesting one, however I didn't get the full force of what the writer (Justin Richards) was trying to do. The characters weren't very interesting and The Doctor felt quite bland to me in this one. If you want a classic to listen to for a cheap price in the 1-50 range there are so much more than this. The Holy Terror, to be precise. It reminded me of the Empress of Mars from Series 10 of New Who, if you loved that then there's a chance you may like this.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
6
Plot Rating:
6
Acting Rating:
8
Replay Rating:
6
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: Drew VogelReview Date: 3/23/17 2:47 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

I appreciate a simple, straightforward adventure story, but this is a bit too slight. There are a number of good ideas in here, and the depiction of the Ice Warriors is excellent, but the overall story just doesn't work. Paul Webster doesn't make a very credible or effective villain, and the revelation about Tanya's origin makes no sense, and certainly doesn't explain how she knows details of Martian history and is able to operate highly advanced Martian technology. But it's not a complete failure by any stretch. The character of Zzaal is wonderfully written and performed. I only wish he'd had a stronger story to appear in.